(. . . in American Imagination and Popular Culture). 30-minute weekly radio program for March 16, 2010.
Artists & social critics have used the idea of the Second Coming of Christ as a metaphor to highlight social ills. (Bumper sticker: "Christ has come ... and boy, is He p***ed!") We hear & look at 4 works of art that do this: Lenny Bruce's "Christ and Moses" routine, a Langston Hughes story featuring the Harlem character "Simple" (condensed by me for radio), W.B. Yeats's poem "The Second Coming," and The Police's song "Synchronicity II"--which is pretty much Yeats's poem, updated & set to music.
Hughes's "Simple Prays a Prayer" from the anthology, The Best of Simple (Hill and Wang, 1961). More info., photos, and links at http://newworldnotes.blogspot.com. Permanent link to the blog entry for this installment: http://newworldnotes.blogspot.com/2010/03/second-coming.html . Links to larger and smaller MP3 files of this installment are available there.